Posts by Matt

Can an at-will employee be required to give notice before leaving?

Can an at-will employee be required to give notice before leaving?

How do I keep an employee at-will but require them to give notice before leaving? At-will employment means an employee can be terminated by an employer at any time, for any reason, and without warning. The employer does not have to establish “just cause” for termination. Unfortunately, an employer may not simultaneously utilize the at-will employment provisions and require that an employee provide notice ahead of separation. Instead, I recommend requesting that employees provide notice as a...

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Is your work environment hostile?

Is your work environment hostile?

Several employees have complained that one of our managers is regularly abrasive and rude, yelling at employees and sometimes insulting them. Could she be creating a hostile work environment? Possibly, but not necessarily. It sounds like this manager’s abrasive and rude manner has made employees feel uncomfortable and affected morale. It’s worth addressing on those grounds alone, but whether it creates a hostile work environment depends on a few additional factors. A hostile work environment occurs when...

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Do you need a company policy for service animals in the workplace?

Do you need a company policy for service animals in the workplace?

Do we need a company policy related to service animals in the workplace? What if someone asks to bring one in? You do not need to have a specific policy on service animals for your employees. If a request comes up, I would recommend relying on your disability accommodation process and engaging in the interactive process. First, determine if the employee has a covered disability as defined by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The best way to do this is to provide the employee with a medical inquiry form...

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Four Misunderstood Terms in the Americans with Disabilities Act

Four Misunderstood Terms in the Americans with Disabilities Act

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) applies to a lot of organizations—all public employers and any private employer with 15 or more employees. Nevertheless, there’s a lot of confusion about what the law requires and what its terms entail. A big reason for this confusion is the language of the law itself; the ADA speaks of nebulous concepts like undue hardship and reasonable accommodation. Words like undue and reasonable are by their nature open to some interpretation, which is not exactly a comfort to...

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New Parent Leave Act Expands Portion of CFRA to Smaller Employers

New Parent Leave Act Expands Portion of CFRA to Smaller Employers

Beginning January 1, 2018, employers in California with 20 or more employees within 75 miles must offer up to 12 weeks of unpaid time off within one year of when a new child is born, adopted, or placed in foster care. Employees are eligible for this leave only if they have worked for the employer for more than 12 months, and have done at least 1,250 hours of work in the 12 months immediately prior to taking the leave. During the leave, employers must continue to pay the usual portion of the employee’s health...

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